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Over hundred Tibetans arrested in Rebkong County

April 20, 2008

TCHRD Press Release
Contact Person: Tenzin Norgay (English) / Jampa Monlam (Tibetan and Chinese)
Tel: +91 1892 223363 / 229225
Email: tenzinnorgay@tchrd.org

Dated: 17 April 2008

Over one hundred Tibetans, including monks and lay people, have been
arrested today for protesting by the Chinese security forces in Rebkong
County (Ch: Tongren Xian), Malho (Ch: Huangnan) "Tibetan Autonomous
Prefecture", Qinghai Province, according to confirmed information
received by the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD).

At around 11 A.M. (Beijing Standard Time) today, 22 monks from Rong
Gonchen Monastery staged a peaceful demonstration in Rebkong County
market calling for the release of three monks (Lobsang Dhondup, 20 years
old; Drakpa, 28 years old; and Lobsang Dhondup, 30 years old), who had
been arrested on 13 April 2008 for participating in a peace march on 16
March 2008.

A few minutes into the demonstration, Chinese armed security forces
arrested the demonstrating monks. When news of the monks' arrest reached
Rong Gonchen Monastery, 80 monks marched to the County market and called
for the release of the 22 monks arrested this morning. As the ordinary
people in the market also joined the monks in their demonstration, the
group became large and very loud.

Consequently additional contingents of security forces arrived at the
County market to quell the demonstrators. When the situation became
extremely tense, former chief of Rong Gonchen Monastery, 80-year-old
Alak Khasutsang, arrived at the market to intervene and try to diffuse
the tension between the demonstrators and the security forces. However,
the Chinese security forces started to severely beat every one at the
scene irrespective of age or status. Over 80 Tibetans, including monks
and lay people, were arrested and taken away to the County Public
Security Bureau Detention Centre.

At the time TCHRD received this information, a large number of Chinese
security forces have been deployed at Rong Gonchen Monastery, shutting
down the monastery for outside visitors as well as restricting monks of
the monastery from leaving.

Related link:

Fresh Protest broke out in Rebkong [16 March 2008]
http://tchrd.org/press/2008/pr20080316b.html
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